Kashmiris observe India’s Republic Day as black day

Call for early resolution of Kashmir dispute

Islamabad/Muzaffarabad/Mirpur: Kashmiris living on both sides of the line of control (LoC) and the world over observed Indian Republic Day as black day on Friday to mark their protest against India’s illegal and forcible occupation of their motherland.

Protest rallies, seminars and symposiums were held in many parts of Indian held Kashmir and Azad Kashmir to seek international community’s attention towards the unresolved issue of Kashmir and rampant violations of human rights committed by Indian troops in Kashmir. In occupied Kashmir, complete shutdown was observed to mark the Indian Republic Day as Black Day. Call for the shutdown was given by the Joint Resistance Leadership comprising Syed Ali Gilani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Muhammad Yasin Malik. Whereas, in Azad Jammu & Kashmir the protest rallies and demonstrations were held in all districts of the liberated territory against continued illegal and unlawful Indian occupation of a major part of the Himalayan State of Jammu & Kashmir.

In Muzaffarabad, Passban-e-Hurriyat Jammu and Kashmir organized a big rally, which was attended by a large number of people. The participants of the rally while expressing complete solidarity with their brethren in Indian occupied Kashmir. Raising placards and long banners inscribed with slogans in favour of Kashmiris’ freedom struggle the participants urged the world community to play its due role in resolving the long-pending dispute, which they said had assumed dangerous proportions. Lambasting India for usurping fundamental democratic and human rights of Kashmiris, one of the banners the protesters were carrying read as “India, you are fake democracy, don’t fool international community”. Addressing the protesters speakers while referring to India’s double standards said, “The country that has deprived Kashmiris of their birth right the right to self determination has no justification whatsoever to celebrate Republic day”.

Besides other parts of AJK, a protest rally followed by a major anti-India demonstration by local students and other elders of the civil society was held at Allama Iqbal Road in the lake view city of Mirpur. The city elders representing all segments of the civil society highlighted the importance of early peaceful settlement of the Kashmir problem besides registering protest against the continued forcible and illegal Indian occupation of major parts of Jammu & Kashmir.

Addressing the rally at Shaheed Chowk, veteran Kashmiri jurist and Secretary General AJK Supreme Court Bar Association Mian Sultan Mahmood Advocate, Academician Prof. Rab Nawaz, Rights activist Hamayoon Zaman, Shakoor Mughal of Muslim Conference and others expressed grave concern over the recent escalation on the line of control following the frequent incidents of unprovoked firing by the Indian troops from across the LoC. Speakers called upon the world community to ensure peaceful solution of Kashmir dispute in accordance with the UN Resolutions and Kashmiri people’s wishes. They said that Pakistan is incomplete without its jugular vein Kashmir. They said that people of Jammu & Kashmir would continue their struggle till the freedom of occupied Jammu Kashmir from Indian bondage and accession of entire Jammu Kashmir state to Pakistan – the ultimate destination of the people of the state.

They paid rich tributes to the valiant struggling people of occupied Jammu & Kashmir for facing large scale Indian atrocities in the held territory. They said the sacrifices being offered by the valiant Kashmiri people would not go waste as the time was not far off when their struggle would be crowned with success very soon.

Various political, religious, social and human rights organizations held anti-India and pro-freedom rallies in other parts of the Mirpur division including Kotli and Bhimbher districts to register protest against the inhuman attitude and continued large scale human rights violations by the Indian forces in the held state.

Meanwhile, All Parties Hurriyet Conference Pak chapter held a peaceful protest outside the Indian High Commission in Islamabad. Addressing the demonstrations, the APHC leaders expressed serious concern over the continued Indian state terrorism in occupied Kashmir. They said that India could not weaken the freedom sentiment of the Kashmiri people through brutal tactics.

They urged the international community to impress upon India and its puppet administration to stop atrocities on the innocent Kashmiris. They said that durable peace in the region was impossible without settlement of the Kashmir dispute and the Kashmiris would continue their struggle till they achieved their right to self-determination.

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